Black History Month 2022

killed by police

Lynching of Henry Smith



Paris, Texas - Henry Smith was killed by a white mob. Smith was accused of killing a young white girl. It made national news and led to an interstate manhunt. He was burned alive until he died, by whites.

Smith was a handyman. He had been arrested by a white police worker, Deputy Henry Vance. Smith was beaten by Vance, with his club. Later, Smith was seen with the daughter of Vance, who was four (4) years of age.

The day before her death, Smith walked through town with the white girl. The Mayor of Paris, and many other whites, saw him with her. When asked, Smith told him he was taking her to the doctor.

Later, her dead body was found in a pasture, outside of town. There were hand marks around her throat. She had died from being strangled. Reports of rape and abuse were invented by relatives of the girl, to inflame white anger.

Smith fled and a manhunt began. He was found within 6 days, in Arkansas, where he was born. As the posse entered Texas, with Smith, a mob of 5,000 waited. They told the local police, in Texarkana, they wanted to kill him, in Paris. Smith begged the police to either protect him or shoot him. The police said they had no power to protect him from the mob and they would not shoot him.

On February 1, at 1:00 p.m., Smith arrived in Paris, Texas. The Mayor of Paris closed all schools and businesses for the lynching. A crowd of 10,000 came to see Smith die. The police workers released Smith to the mob, where a platform was built, to kill him.

Vance, his son (15 years of age), and brother-in-law had Smith tied-up on the platform. There, the three (3) used hot irons on his feet, torso, and limbs. They then used the hot iron and burned out the eyes of Smith. It was then shoved down his throat. The crowd cheered each response of agony from Smith. Finally, the whites poured kerosene over him and set the whole platform on fire.

The lynching of Smith made headlines for its viciousness and cruelty. The Boston Daily Globe called it 'White Savagery.' It was perhaps the most heinous lynching in United States history.

No one was punished for the lynching of Henry Smith.

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Lynching of Henry Smith

Torture of Henry Smith

First Aerial Bombing



Tulsa, Oklahoma - Whites made airstrikes against black people. This was the second day of The Tulsa Race Riots.

Early Wednesday morning, whites flew airplanes over the Greenwood District of Tulsa. From the air, whites shot rifles and made aerial bombing runs against black people.

The bombs landed on buildings and homes. The bombers aimed at fleeing families. The aircraft was privately owned. Police participated. The police claimed it was to prevent a 'Negro uprising' in the town.

One witness made this report. There were 'a dozen or more' planes. They circled the neighborhood. The planes dropped 'burning turpentine balls' on an office building, a hotel, a filling station and other buildings. Men fired at black people. They were gunned down in the street.

This was the first aerial bombing in the United States.

Groveland Four



Groveland, Florida - Norma and William Padgett, a white couple, falsely accused four (4) black males of rape and kidnapping. They were Walter Irvin, Samuel Shepherd, Charles Greenlee, and Ernest Thomas.

William Padgett said his car had broken down, while with his 17 year-old wife, Norma. He said they had just left a dance. Padgett claimed the four (4) stopped and offered help. Instead, Padgett said they attacked him and kidnapped his wife.

There was a manhunt for the four (4). All were quickly arrested, except Thomas. The rest were taken to Lake County jail. In jail, the three (3) were tortured. Thomas was found a week later. All were charged with rape. Lake County Sheriff Willis McCall killed Thomas, before he was arrested.

As word spread, a mob of 100 whites demanded that McCall deliver the three (3) survivors to them. The mob was told the three (3) had been sent to state prison. In response, the mob attacked the small black community in Groveland. Black people were shot and black property was destroyed by the white mob.

At trial, medical exams found no proof of rape. Despite this, all three (3) were convicted of rape, by an all-white jury. Shepherd and Irvin were sentenced to death. Greenlee got life in prison.

The United States Supreme Court threw out the two (2) death sentences. Those cases were retried. As Shepherd and Irvin were headed back to trial, Sheriff McCall shot them both. Shepherd died. Irvin was injured. Sheriff McCall claimed self-defense. Greenlee never appealed his sentence, since it was not for death. He was 16 years of age.

A new all-white jury convicted Irvin. He was again sentenced to death. In 1955, it was reduced to life in prison. In 1962, Greenlee was paroled. In 1968, Irvin was paroled. He died a year later, of heart disease. Greenlee died in 2012, at 78 years of age.

Lake County Sheriff Willis McCall is pictured, on the far left.

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Groveland Four

First Selma March Began



Selma, Alabama - Reverend C.T. Vivian led the first Selma march. It was to end at the courthouse in Marion, Alabama. The march protested the arrest of James Orange. He was a member of the Dallas County Voters League (DCVL).

In Marion, Alabama state troopers attacked the marchers. Jimmie Lee Jackson was shot by white police. Jackson was shot as he tried to protect his mother and grandfather from the police.

Jackson was denied medical care in Marion. He was moved twenty (20) miles to the Good Samaritan Hospital in Selma. On February 26th, Jackson died, in the hospital.

Fred Hampton Killed By Police



Chicago, Illinois - Fred Hampton was killed, in bed, in his apartment. Chicago police workers killed him. Hampton was unarmed and asleep, and in bed.

On Wednesday, December 3rd, Fred Hampton taught a political education course. It was at a local church. Members of the Black Panther Party attended. This was the night before his death.

After the class, several Black Panthers went to his Monroe Street apartment to spend the night. This was routine after a course.

Besides Hampton, the group included Deborah Johnson, Blair Anderson, James Grady, Ronald 'Doc' Satchell, Harold Bell, Verlina Brewer, Louis Truelock, Brenda Harris, and Mark Clark.

William O'Neal waited for them, when they arrived. O'Neal was chief of security. There, the group ate a late meal, prepared by O'Neal. The time was around midnight.

O'Neal slipped drugs into Hampton's drink. It was the barbiturate sleep agent secobarbitol. Hampton consumed the drink during the dinner.

The drug sedated Hampton. It kept him asleep, during the police raid. O'Neal left at this point.

At about 1:30 a.m., December 4th, Hampton was on the phone with his mother. He fell asleep, mid-sentence.

At 4:00 a.m., a heavily armed tactical unit, of white males, went to Hampton's apartment. They were sent by the Cook County State's Attorney's Office. They were joined by the Chicago Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

At 4:45 a.m., the tactical unit and Chicago Police shot first. They shot 90 times into Hampton's apartment. Only Mark Clark fired a shot, after being shot first.

Hampton survived the barrage. He was still breathing. The Chicago Police executed him. A point-blank shot was fired, that killed Hampton.

This was part of the FBI's Counter-Intelligence Program (COINTELPRO).

William O'Neal committed suicide on January 15th, 1990 (Martin Luther King Day). O'Neal ran into oncoming traffic on a Chicago expressway. An automobile hit and killed O'Neal.

MOVE Bombed By Police



Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - The Philadelphia Police Department used a bomb, in an airstrike, that killed 11 people. It was dropped on the roof of a home. The neighborhood was densely packed. The Philadelphia Fire Department let the fire burn out of control.

MOVE was the Christian Movement For Life. It was a back-to-nature group of black people, led by John Africa. From 1981, MOVE members lived in a row home, at 6221 Osage Avenue, in Philadelphia.

For years, neighbors complained about MOVE members. The complaints were about trash around the house and confrontations with neighbors. MOVE used a bullhorn to make announcements, of political messages, in the neighborhood.

Mayor Wilson Goode and police commissioner Gregore J. Sambor evacuated the neighborhood before their planned attack on the MOVE house. They promised that everyone could return after twenty-four (24) hours.

Monday, May 13, 1985, five hundred (500) police workers arrived at the MOVE house. The police were there to arrest MOVE members and clear the house.

There were thirteen (13) people inside the MOVE house. They were eight (8) adults and five (5) children. The police ordered everyone to leave. MOVE members did not respond.

The police fired tear gas bombs into the house. The MOVE members fired at the bomb throwers. Police fired ten thousand (10,000) rounds at the house.

The police barrage stopped. The MOVE members stayed inside. Next, Commissioner Sambor ordered the house be bombed, from the air.

At 5:27 p.m., Frank Powell was head of the Philadelphia police bomb disposal squad. Powell lit a 45 second fuse to C-4 (an explosive used in the Vietnam War). From a helicopter, Powell dropped the bomb, on the still occupied MOVE house.

The bomb exploded on the roof and started a fire. Mayor Goode ordered that the fire should not be put out until the bunker burned. That was one and a half (1 1/2) hours after the fire started.

As a result, eleven (11) people died. Six (6) adults and five (5) children were killed. The children ranged from seven (7) to fourteen (14) years of age. Ramona Africa was one of the survivors. She said the police shot at them as they tried to escape the fire.

Ramona Africa was charged and convicted of riot and conspiracy, as a survivor of MOVE. No city employees, politicians, or officials were criminally charged for the attack.

Amadou Diallo Killed By Police



New York, New York - Amadou Diallo was killed by four New York City police workers. They were not in uniform. When they stopped Diallo, he reached for his wallet. The police fired 41 gunshots at him. Diallo was hit 19 times. The police continued to shoot after Diallo had fallen.

Diallo was alone and unarmed. The police workers were all white. Their names were Sean Carroll, Richard Murphy, Edward McMellon, and Kenneth Boss. A trial was held and all four were found not guilty.

Amadou Diallo was born in Liberia, September 2, 1975. He died at 23 years of age.

Timothy Thomas Killed By Police



Cincinnati, Ohio - Cincinnati police worker Stephen Roach killed Timothy Thomas. The night Thomas was killed, nine police workers chased him, on foot. They had an arrest warrent, with his name on it, for minor infractions. Almost all were for driving without a license and not wearing a seat belt.

During the foot chase, Thomas turned a corner, into a dark alley. Stephen Roach was in the alley and saw Thomas. As Thomas reached to pull up his pants, Roach shot Thomas in the chest, at close range. Thomas died on the way to the hospital. At the time of his death, Thomas was 19 years of age.

Roach was tried and cleared of the killing of Thomas. This shooting led to the most violent riot, in the United States, that year.

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Police Killed Timothy Thomas

Oscar Grant Killed By Police



Oakland, California - Oscar Grant III was shot and killed by Johannes Mehserle, Thursday at 2:15 a.m. Grant III was shot point-blank and face down, with Mehserle on his back. Mehserle worked for the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) police.

The round that Mehserle shot into Grant, bounced off the concrete, into Grant's lungs. Grant cried out immediately that Mehserle shot him. Less than seven hours later, Grant died at 9:13 a.m., at Highland Hospital, in Oakland, California.

On January 30th, 2010, Mehserle was charged with Grant's murder. Mehserle was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and served 11 months in jail.

The last day of Oscar Grant's life was made into a movie, Fruitvale Station (2013).

Aiyana Jones Killed By Police



Detroit, Michigan - On Sunday, in a midnight police raid, Joseph Weekley killed Aiyana Jones. It was part of a reality television show.

Detroit Special Response Team (SRT, aka SWAT) workers burst into the home of 7-year old Aiyana (pictured left). She slept next to her grandmother, Mertilla Jones.

Unknown to them, Detroit police prepared to raid the home. It was filmed for the reality television show on AMC, called First 48.

At 12:40 a.m., the police assault team threw a flash bang grenade. It went through the front window of the home, where Aiyana slept.

The grenade caused Aiyana's clothing to catch fire. As Mertilla tried to put out the fire, Weekley entered the home. He was armed with an MP5 machine gun and a ballistic shield..

Inside the home, Weekley shot and killed Aiyana. Weekley claimed Mertilla grabbed his gun. No fingerprints from Mertilla were found on Weekley's MP5 gun.

Weekley was not fired. Kym Worthy, the Wayne County Prosecutor, cleared Weekley of any charges for Aiyana's murder.

A protest was held in 2016, for Aiyana's murder. Weekley had been selected to co-chair the Detroit Police Department's Committee on Race and Equality.

Christopher Dorner Manhunt and Killed By Police



Big Bear Lake, California - The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) searched for Christopher Dorner, on Sunday. It lasted nine (9) days. In the end, Dorner died.

The LAPD claimed Dorner targeted and killed police workers. The alleged motive was rampant and unjust violence against black people, by Los Angeles police workers.

Dorner worked for the LAPD. His training officer was Teresa Evans. During one encounter, Dorner saw Evans abuse a suspect. Later, Dorner filed a police brutality complaint against Evans. Because of this complaint, the LAPD fired Dorner, in 2008.

On October 3rd, 2011, the California Court of Appeals dismissed Dorner's case. This covered Dorner's firing and his police brutality complaint.

On Tuesday, February 12th, 2013, the San Bernardino Sheriff's Office said they found Dorner. He was at a cabin, near Big Bear Lake, California. The Sheriff's Office set the cabin on fire, with Dorner inside. Dorner died inside the cabin.

Eric Garner Killed By Police



Staten Island, New York - Eric Garner was killed by New York police. Daniel Pantaleo, a New York police worker, had Garner in a headlock and suffocated him. As Garner suffocated, he cried out, 'I can't breathe.' Garner died for lack of oxygen.

At about 3:30 p.m., Justin D'Amico, worked as a plain-clothes police worker. D'Amico approached Garner. Moments earlier, Garner had just stopped a fight between two other people.

Possibly, because of the fight, Pantaleo approached Garner. Pantaleo accused Garner that he sold cigarettes. Pantaleo reached for Garner. Garner said, 'Please, don't touch me.'

Pantaleo grabbed Garner around the neck and restricted Garner's air. As Garner pled for his life, Pantaleo slowly choked Garner to death.

Garner's death led to national outrage. Video of the murder was seen across the country. The New York medical examiner ruled Garner's death a homicide. Despite this, no one was ever tried for Garner's murder.

John Crawford III Killed By Police



Beavercreek, Ohio - Sean Williams killed John Crawford, III. Williams, a white male, worked for the Beavercreek Police Department. Crawford was killed as he shopped in a Walmart.

Crawford picked up a bb gun, off a shelf, in a Walmart store. As Crawford carried it, he talked on his phone. Ronald Ritchie, a white male, called the police, and said Crawford aimed the harmless item at people in the store. Video footage showed Ritchie had lied. Ritchie later admitted he lied.

In response, Williams entered the Walmart store and shot and killed Crawford. As customers fled the shooting, a woman died of a heart attack.

Neither Ritchie nor Williams were tried for any crimes that led to the two (2) deaths.

Michael Brown Killed By Police



Ferguson, Missouri - Michael Brown was killed by Ferguson police worker, Darren Wilson. Brown was 18 years of age, when he died. At the time, Wilson was 28 years of age.

A store worker alleged Brown stole cigars. Wilson found Brown. As Brown ran, Wilson shot at Brown. Once Brown stopped and turned, Wilson shot him six (6) times. Brown was unarmed. Wilson quit the Ferguson Police Department later that year.

The day of the killing, the black community, in Ferguson protested. Further protests were in November of that year, and August of 2015.

Source:

Michael Brown Killing

Wilson Killed Brown

Chicago Police Kill Laquan McDonald



Chicago, Illinois - Chicago Police worker, Jason Van Dyke, shot Laquan McDonald, sixteen (16) times. Van Dyke was a white male. McDonald was a black male, and 17 years of age.

A report of property damage on cars was the reason the Chicago police came to the area. McDonald was seen and the police used their vehicles to block him. He got around the vehicles.

Van Dyke arrived, exited his car, and opened fire on McDonald. He was re-loading his gun as he was told to stop firing at McDonald. McDonald was walking away when Van Dyke shot him to death.

It took a year before Van Dyke was charged with the death of McDonald. The Chicago Police Department and Chicago prosecutor withheld video evidence that showed the shooting.

On October 5, 2018, for the first time in fifty (50) years, a Chicago police worker was convicted of murder. Van Dyke got six (6) years and nine (9) months in prison.

Source:

Jason Van Dyke Killed Laquan McDonald

Van Dyke Charged More than 1 Year later

Akai Gurley Killed By Police



Brooklyn, New York - Peter Liang killed Akai Gurley. Liang was a police worker with the New York Police Department. He shot and killed Akai Gurley, a black man, in a stairwell, near the 8th floor. It was in The Pink Houses, a high-rise residence.

Gurley had visited his girlfriend in the building. He was there to have his hair braided, before Thanksgiving. Liang was in the building on patrol. As he saw Gurley, Liang pulled his weapon and fired a shot at him. Gurley died in the stairwell.

On February 11, 2016, Liang was convicted of manslaughter and official misconduct. He faced 15 years in prison.

Chinese rallied in New York City and across the United States to defend Liang. This included WeChat, Facebook, Twitter, and email.

On April 19, 2016, Justice Chun reduced the conviction to criminally negligent homicide. Liang was given five years probation and 800 hours of community service.

Source:

Akai Gurley Story

Peter Liang Chinese American Opinion

Peter Liang Outcry

Chinese Rally For Peter Liang

Tamir Rice Killed By Police



Cleveland, Ohio - Tamir Rice was killed by Timothy Loehmann (pictured left), a Cleveland police worker. Tamir Rice was a 12 year-old black male child. Loehmann was a 26 year-old, white male.

Saturday, November 22nd, 2014, a 911 call was made about a boy that pointed a pistol at random people. The caller was at a city park at a nearby gazebo. The caller said the gun was probably fake.

The 911 dispatcher asked the caller three times, if Rice was black or white. The caller described what Rice wore. The dispatcher refused to send police until the caller gave Tamir's race.

The caller left the gazebo. Later, Rice sat on a bench, under the gazebo, alone.

Around 3:30 p.m., Rice left the bench and began to leave the gazebo. The Cleveland police, Loehmann and Frank Garmback drove on the grass at Rice.

As the police car stopped, Loehmann got out of the car and shot Rice twice. The entire encounter took less than two (2) seconds. Rice collapsed to the ground immediately.

Two minutes later, the police arrested Rice's 14 year-od sister as she ran toward her fallen brother. As Rice laid on the ground, and suffered from the gunshot wounds, the Cleveland police gave no aid.

Later that day, Cleveland Deputy Chief Tomba said 'the child did not threaten the officer verbally or physically.'

On November 26th, Rice died at MetroHealth Medical Center. The cause of death was a gunshot wound to the chest, with major internal damage.

Loehmann was not charged with the murder of Rice. In 2017, Loehmann was fired from the Cleveland Police Department.

Walter Scott Killed By Police



North Charleston, South Carolina - Walter Lamar Scott was killed, by North Charleston police worker, Michael Slager. Scott was 50 years of age when he died. Slager was 33 years of age, when he murdered Scott.

Alton Sterling Killed By Police



Baton Rouge, Louisiana - Alton Sterling was shot at point blank range, by two white Baton Rouge police workers. Sterling died as a result of the shooting. The shooting was videotaped.

At 12:35 a.m., Monday morning, police arrived at 2112 North Foster Drive. The police were in the parking lot of Triple S Food Mart. A police call reported someone waved a gun and had threatened another. The store owner said Sterling had not caused any problems.

Once the two police workers saw Sterling, a large black man, they tried to arrest him. It is unclear what crime the two white police workers claimed Alton Sterling had committed.

The two police workers tasered and dragged Sterling to the ground. Howie Lake II placed his knee on Sterling's back. At the same time, Blane Salamoni grabbed Sterling's arms.

Lake shouted that Sterling had a gun. Salamoni pulled his gun and fired 3 shots into the back and chest of Sterling. Salamoni paused and shot Sterling 3 more times (totaled 6 shots), which caused Sterling's death.

The two white killers were never charged and kept their jobs with the police.

Philando Castile Killed By Police



Falcon Heights, Minnesota - Philando Castile was murdered by Jeronimo Yanez, who worked for the St. Anthony, Minnesota police. Yanez fired 7 shots into a car with 3 people in it, including Castile.

Castile drove with Diamond Reynolds, and her 4 year-old daughter. He was licensed to carry a firearm and had no criminal record.

At 9:04 p.m., Tuesday evening, Jeronimo Yanez (pictured left) and Joseph Kauser, stopped Philando Castile (pictured right). Earlier, a police worker radioed that he wanted Castile stopped, 'just because of the wide-set nose.'

At 9:05 p.m., Castile told Yanez he was licensed to carry a firearm and that there was a firearm in the car. This was required by Minnesota law, for licensed gun owners.

The following exchange was said. Castile, 'I'm not pulling it out.'

Diamond Reynolds said, 'He's not pulling it out!'

Yanez, reached for his gun and yelled, 'Don't pull it out!'

Yanez pulled his gun and pointed it inside the car.

Reynolds was in the passenger seat, next to Philando Castile. Reynolds' daughter was in the back seat.

Reynolds yelled, 'No!'

Yanez fired (7) times at Castile, at almost point-blank range.

Five hit Philando Castile.

Reynolds live-streamed the aftermath of the shooting. She was arrested by the police and later released without charges.

Yanez was found not guilty of manslaughter. There were 10 whites and 2 black people on the jury. Initially, the jury voted 10-2 for not guilty. The two holdouts were pressured, and Yanez escaped punishment.

Micah Johnson Killed By Police



Dallas, Texas - The Dallas Police Department claimed Micah Johnson killed several police workers. Johnson was killed by Dallas police. The police bombed Johnson to death, in downtown Dallas.

On Wednesday, July 7th, there was a protest against police violence, in Dallas. The previous two (2) days, white male police murdered Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. Sterling was killed in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Castile was killed, in Falcon Heights, Minnesota.

In both cases, the victim was black and the police worker was white. Both times, the victim was shot at point-blank range, multiple times. Both times, the victim was killed. This started protests in Dallas, Texas.

It was alleged Johnson was angered over these murders of black men. Johnson responded and killed 5 police workers. He injured 11 others.

In the early morning hours, on Thursday, July 8th, it was claimed Johnson was in El Centro College. At 2:30 a.m., the Dallas police used a robot bomb, with C4, and killed Johnson. It was the first time a robot bomb was used, by police, for this purpose.

Gavin Long Killed By Police



Baton Rouge, Louisiana - Gavin Long allegedly killed 3 police workers in Louisiana. Long was killed by the police. It was claimed Long was motivated by recent murders of black men, by police.

Sunday, 8:48 a.m., Long was shot and killed, from 100 yards away. He was killed by a Special Weapons Assault Team (SWAT) worker of the Louisiana State Police. It was near Benny's Car Wash, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Breonna Taylor Killed By Police



Louisville, Kentucky - Breonna Taylor was shot to death, in her home. The killers were three (3) white male workers, of the Louisville Police Department. They were Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, and Myles Cosgrove. Taylor was in her apartment, in bed, and naked, when she was shot.

It all began with a no-knock search warrant, for suspected drugs. Just after 12:00 a.m. (midnight), the three (3) police workers came to Taylor's apartment. Kenneth Walker, Taylor's boyfriend was in the apartment. After Mattingly broke through the door, Walker got his licensed gun.

The other two (2) police workers waited outside. Walker fired one shot, with Mattingly in the apartment. Mattingly, then fired six (6) shots. Cosgrove fired twelve (12) shots and Hankison fired ten (10) shots into the apartment.

Walker survived unharmed. The Louisville Police arrested Walker. He was charged with assault and attempted murder of Mattingly. The charges against Walker were later dropped. The apartment was never searched.

George Floyd Killed By Police



Minneapolis, Minnesota - George Floyd was killed by the police. He died of heart failure, caused by forced restraint. Four (4) Minneapolis police workers were involved in his death. They were Derek Chauvin, J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane, and Tou Thao.

Floyd was a black American. He had just left a convenience store. Inside, someone called the police. It was alleged that Floyd passed a fake $20 bill. In response, Chauvin, arrived at the scene. He was joined by Kueng, Lane, and Thao. Chauvin met Floyd on the street and took him to the ground.

With Floyd on the ground, Chauvin put his knee on Floyd's neck. Two (2) other Minneapolis police workers held down Floyd's legs and torso. Another police worker kept watch. Floyd told Chauvin many times, 'I can't breathe.' Chauvin ignored him and kept his knee on Floyd's neck. Seven minutes later, Floyd died.

Chauvin was an Army Reservist from 1996-2004. After the encounter with George Floyd, Chauvin was fired the next day, May 26th, 2020, from the Minneapolis Police Department.

George Floyd Cause of Death

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